Clegg promises to close Yarl's Wood after Huppert's question

July 21, 2010 2:56 PM

Julian at WestminsterDeputy Prime Minister, Nick Clegg, today (Wednesday, July 21) announced that the Yarl's Wood Detention Centre will close after he was urged to end the scandal of child detention by Cambridge MP, Julian Huppert.

Julian raised the controversial issue as Mr Clegg made history by being the first Liberal to take Prime Minister's Questions since First World War Premier Lloyd George.

"Many illiberal things have happened in this country not least under the last government, and one of the worst is the detention of children for immigration purposes," said Julian. "What concrete action will be taken to end this scandal?"

Mr Clegg replied: "It was simply a moral outrage that last year the Labour government imprisoned behind bars 1,000 children who were innocent of any wrong doing whatsoever; and this coalition government, like so many other things, will once again restore a sense of decency and liberty to the way in which we conduct ourselves.

"The coalition government will come forward shortly with an announcement about how we will stick to our pledge to end child detention and close Yarl's Wood for good."

Later Julian said: "I am delighted with this outcome. I have been pushing for this for some time.

"It is utterly wrong that we should lock up children in this way; it is a disgrace and a poor reflection on our nation as a whole. Today we took the first important step towards ending this practice for good."

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